As I sat in Holland Tunnel traffic for what felt like a lifetime, I turned to my partner and said “It’s OK, baby…karma will make up for it by somehow getting them to play us a 30 minute REBUBULA!” I had stopped in Brooklyn to pick up some friends for a weekend of music and adventure in Philly and we were starting it all off with a moe. show at the Electric Factory… Six hours after departure, we arrived at the venue. Thanks to said traffic, we missed the first few songs, but as it turns out, it was entirely worth it…
The Electric Factory in Philadelphia is every bit as historic and cool as the city itself. It was my first time to the venue and I walked into a sea of moe.rons and everything was alllright! The band was playing very thick heavy tracks this evening, and it was all we needed after a long and trying drive. Standing in line at the bar guy in front of me turned back and said “It is INcredible to me how Rob (Derhak) just slaps the shit out of that bass!”
moe. started with “Skrunk”, which (according to a moe.ron friend of mine) comes out of the Sticks + Stones studio sessions. We also missed Al (Schneir) on his electric mandolin during “Cathedral” and “Godzilla” Which then moved into “Runaway Overlude.”
As the band kept moving further into their first set, their family (so to speak) that had come together in Philly was feeling a buildup to something amazing. The band slipped in a new track “Suck a Lemon” off their latest release What Happened to the La-Las, their first newly created studio release since 2008. Things started to get a little weird (in a good way) when they started singing about “Awesome Gary”…what is up with him and his shoes?!
When I first heard them lean into one of their classic hits “Moth,” one of my most-loved moe songs, I felt they could have ended the set then and there…
“She knows nothing at all about life. Yeah, she knows everything about living!”
….but they went on and ended with “Don’t Fuck with Flo.” Chuck (Garvey’s) guitar solo in the midst of it left us all with a little taste in our mouths of that something amazing I was referring to earlier.
After a well-deserved 40 minute breather, the band and the fans returned. Their “Seat of my Meat” opener (as one YouTuber called it) was full of energy, flashing lights, amazing guitar solos, a lot of oh’s and a ton of ah’s. The high and low peaks of the two songs back to back really set the pace for the second set. Another new one, “Puebla” began into “Billy Goat.”
As I stood Al-side looking on from the side of the stage, I wondered where else in the world do you really get to hear a kick-ass xylophone solo? AT A MOE SHOW! Jim (Loughlin) is a man of many sounds and he tapped on that metal til his heart was content! Whilst this was happening, I spotted Rob sitting down between the percussionists swigging on a bottle of Yuengling Lager during this little break of his; when in Rome, huh Rob?!
Once the band circled back to “Moth”, it was pretty much a lock; there was no question to me why they had been selling out show after show. They were shredding it! The excitement they must have been feeling over their upcoming Jam in the Dam VI performance was apparent in their set. The way which they joined their new and old songs alike while projecting the energy out into their fans with their tight sound and incredible lights…well I can’t speak for the rest of the tour, but for this Friday evening in Philly, it was ON! After about a fifteen minute “Silver Sun,” my premonition came to be: REBUBULA SECOND SET CLOSER! And while it was not 30 full minutes long as I had suggested to my partner, for the 23+ minutes that they did stretch it out to it became the highlight of my evening. I watched from the balcony level starring directly into the stage and took a moment to also appreciate the fine job that goes into creating their light show. Wow!
During the break, I made my way to merch where I picked up a signed vinyl copy of their new album and stopped to talk with a young man holding some pretty sweet pins created by Dan Medan of Headie Creations. People were all around catching their breath and being silly amongst friends. And after a short recharge, a couple of quick announcements, shout outs and stats, the band encored with “Queen of Everything” and closed the show with “Akimbo.”
SETLIST: moe. @ Electric Factory, Philadelphia, PA 3.9.12
I: Skrunk, Cathedral@, Godzilla > Runaway Overlude, Suck A Lemon, Awesome Gary > Moth > Don’t Fuck With Flo
II: Seat Of My Pants > meat. > Puebla > Billy Goat > Moth, Silver Sun#, Rebubula
E: Queen Of Everything > Akimbo
@ w/ al. on electric mandolin
# LTP > 7/20/11